For the past few weeks, our community has been witness to various efforts attempting to reverse the decision of Riverside County [3rd District] Supervisor Jeff Stone and County Services Manager Bill Brown [Riverside County Economic Development Agency (EDA)] to cancel the recreation contract administered by the Idyllwild Community Recreation Council (ICRC).
Most of the outcry has been to keep the recreation management local, “Save Town Hall,” and keep the jobs local.
ICRC is local, and that didn’t work. And, the jobs being discussed are those jobs for employees that were hired by ICRC, and ICRC alone is responsible for and to those employees.
As to what “Save Town Hall” has to do with anything escapes me. No matter what happens, we will have Town Hall for recreation.
As with any contract, there are performance parameters the contractor must meet. Those items are carefully delineated and it is assumed that the contractor understands the contract and the expectations of the contracting agency.
Approximately two years ago, ICRC’s activities and management of recreation came under scrutiny by the contracting agency, EDA. At that time, EDA became more involved in the oversight of ICRC, with the underlying concern that our recreation needs were not being met, and questioned ICRC’s intentions, ability and willingness to meet those needs.
Last year, when the contract was to be renewed, the community, at the infamous “Firehouse Meeting,” convinced the County Service Area 36 Advisory Committee to ask Supervisor Stone to continue the contract with ICRC. And that was the decision.
The supervisor directed EDA to extend the contract on a month-to-month basis, with the condition that ICRC improve the recreation services to the community. It appears, that in the county’s eyes, ICRC has not provided the level of recreation expected or required by their contract.
It is my opinion that the county is not going to reverse the decision to cancel the ICRC contract. It is to the community’s advantage to find a way to work with the supervisor and EDA so that we have the very best recreation program our taxes can provide.